A brightening towards blue, one version

Jæger, Irma Salo, 2007

Oil on canvas, 162cmx132cm

Irma Salo Jæger (b.1928) was born in Finland but moved to Norway in 1954 and has since been a prominent figure in Norwegian art. Together with Jacob Weidemann, Knut Rumohr, Inger Sitter and Gunnar S. Gundersen, among others, she belongs to the generation of artists who represented the breakthrough of abstract painting in Norway during the 1950s and 60s. Her art stems from the European modernist tradition and she has worked in an abstract idiom throughout her career.  

In the pictures from the 60s there is a clear reference to nature; the colours are harmoniously modulated and blended with each other. Towards the end of the decade she moved away from a heavy, textural and lyrical style to a more powerful and expressive one, with bold brushstrokes and large formats. In the later works from the 80s and 90s Salo Jæger turned to a more stringent and controlled form of expression that she has since refined and developed. The painting A brightening towards blue, one version is a characteristic example of her mature, serene painting style. The structure and composition of the painting has become more constructive and classical, and the palette concentrated around luminous colours of the spectrum. Transparent layers of paint are interspersed with opaque areas of colour creating a pulsating, atmospheric effect that, despite the picture’s surface character, opens up for depth and spaciousness. 

On the whole, Irma Salo Jæger’s considerable and multi-faceted production can be seen as variations on the same fundamental theme; she devotes herself consistently to the formal means of painting and investigates how lines, shapes and colour relate to each other as two-dimensional pictorial surface and pulsating space.